Re: [LEAPSECS] A lurker surfaces

From: Poul-Henning Kamp <>
Date: Tue, 02 Jan 2007 20:33:10 +0000

In message <>, Tony Fin
ch writes:

>Good call. I have found that keeping my watch on GMT worked quite well
>when I was in San Francisco and regularly communicating with people in the
>UK, but when I moved back to Cambridge a GMT watch during BST was similar
>yet wrong enough to be too confusing.

This is a long documented and researched point in man/machine
interfaces: "If you change something, change it good!"

Small changes to a user interface leads to confusion because people
cannot instinctively tell if they are confronted by the old or the
new version.

I used to have a watch which showed both digital and analog when I
lived in the USA. I kept the digital display on UTC and the hands
on local time, worked great.

By extension, that is why most calendar reform proprosals fall flat
before they even get talked about: they tinker with details. If
you want to reform calendars, do something radical so that people
can see the difference clearly.

Poul-Henning Kamp       | UNIX since Zilog Zeus 3.20
phk_at_FreeBSD.ORG         | TCP/IP since RFC 956
FreeBSD committer       | BSD since 4.3-tahoe
Never attribute to malice what can adequately be explained by incompetence.
Received on Tue Jan 02 2007 - 12:44:11 PST

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